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ABC World News Sunday

News/Business. Dan Harris. The latest world and national news. New. (HD) (CC)

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Campbell 5, Boehner 5, Afghanistan 5, Mr. Boehner 4, Us 3, U.s. 3, Joye 3, America 2, Omnaris 2, Abc 2, Spa 2, Bp 2, Washington 2, Iran 2, New York 2, Mr. Obama 2, Martha Raddatz 2, T.j. Winnick 2, Shane Bauer 2, Rick Klein 2,
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  ABC    ABC World News Sunday    News/Business. Dan Harris. The latest  
   world and national news. New. (HD) (CC)  

    September 12, 2010
    6:00 - 6:30pm EDT  

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i'm dan harris. tonight on "world news," warnings, missed? as homeowners return to that neighborhood incinerated by a gas explosion, a document shows the owner of the pipeline was warned of a high risk three years ago. free at last? after so much back and forth, iran says it will release one of those three american hikers, but the news for her companions is not as good. boehner blinks? the top republican in the house says he would vote to raise taxes in the rich, leaving room for the white house, which today ramped up its effort to
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discredit him. gulf surprise. the question for months has been, where did all that oil go? and, vip treatment. spa treatments, gourmet food, $45,000 private cabanas? this is a rock concert? good evening. new questions tonight about the gas main that exploded in a huge fire ball, turning entire homes in a neighborhood outside of san francisco into piles of ash. four people were killed. five are still missing. 60 were injured. and today, we learned that three years ago, the power company determined that gas line was at risk of failure. so, now the question. could this disaster have been prevented? neal karlinsky is in san bruno, california, once again tonight. >> reporter: the road home began at the end of this long line in a parking lot filled with hundreds who last saw their homes while escaping the
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explosion. they were allowed to return in shifts, under tight security and escorts from the utility company to personally start each home's pilot light safely. >> we don't want to live there, we just get clothes. >> reporter: tonight, there is new information that the pipeline was known to be potentially dangerous. in a 2007 document, pg&e said it ranks in one of the highest sections, and adding the risk of failure is unacceptably high. the document was part of a budget request to replace the line. >> this raises the question of what pg&e knew and when they knew it, and whether better safety procedures could have avoided this or theable tragedy. >> reporter: san brew nope's mayor was unaware of the risk assessment. is that troubling to you? >> the whole thing is. >> reporter: you can see the pipe right there that blew, investigators are taking measurements and pictures of it. it's the focus of their investigati
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investigation. later, investigators will ship the pipe to a lab in washington to help determine if line work in the neighborhood could have been a factor. >> and that's one of the things that that examination will aceta ascertain, because we'll see if the failure was because of fatigue, an impact in that case, on instruction? >> reporter: tonight, even as residents return, more frustration. >> i can't get in. >> reporter: many aren't yet allowed to go back. others, who were supposed to be let in, were told at the last minute to come back tomorrow. so, you came here today thinking you were going home and they told you you can't? >> they told us we can't. there's a change in the bound y boundari boundaries, more houses. >> reporter: behind me here is where homeowners have been lining to find out when we can go in. we'll be allowed to go in soon. but the owners of at least 83 homes damaged or destroyed in this fire ball still have no idea when they'll be able to get
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inside and find out if they have anything left. dan? >> incredibly frustrating for those people, i sure. neal karlinsky tonight. and in colorado, hundreds of evacuees were allowed to return to their homes in an area near bould their was hit by wild fires. 169 homes were destroyed. now investigators are looking into whether a fire pit sparked this blaze, which could mean criminal charges are possible. the fire is now more than 70% contained. congress goes back into session tomorrow, and issue number is is your taxes, mostly the bush tax cuts. the white house and republicans have been sparring over this issue, but today, a top republican seemed to open the door to a deal. here's david kerley. >> reporter: in a week during which you'll hear a lot of this -- >> tax cuts. >> tax cuts. >> reporter: expect and earful on the bush tax cuts specifically. republicans want to extend them. the president says it's time to let them expire for the rich,
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those making more than $250,000. and today, a stunning admission from the top republican in the house. >> if the only option i have is to vote for those at 250 and below, of course i'm going to do that. but i think that's bad policy. >> reporter: a nod to the president's plan, and a strategic effort to blunt mr. obama's latest attack. >> let me be clear to mr. boehner and everybody else. we should not hold middle class tax cuts hostage any longer. >> reporter: the president claims ligclaim s lets the cuts expire will give the government $700 billion to cut the deficit. >> borrowing $700 billion to extend tax cuts that average more than $100,000 a year to millionaires and even billionaires, is the least effective bang for the buck we can have. >> reporter: extending the cuts for everyone cost the government $3.7 trillion over ten years. >> what are the odds of the bush tax cuts getting extended before election day? >> i'd say the chances are zero that those tax cuts get
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extended. >> reporter: what we are seeing is a white house worried about john boehner becoming the next speaker, and how would the house operate under a speaker boehner? he's already called for the repeal of the president's health care reform and the financial reform law. so, the white house press secretary was quick to point to a story today headlined a republican leader, tightly bound to lobbyists. >> so they can go back to writing the rules themselves. they say, we don't need to buy access to mr. boehner, we already have that. >> reporter: mr. boehner has gotsen the attention of the white house. robert gibbs just put out a statement a few minutes ago, saying they welcome mr. boehner's worlds, but say time will tell if those words become action. and the white house tells me that the president will talk about boehner's statement in the coming days. dan? >> thanks, david kerley. and so now we're going to bring in our seen your washington editor rick klein for his weekly political insights segment.
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and did boehner actually blink? >> i think boehner winked more than blinked. he gives president obama a chance in a form that he wants, but the democrats can no longer argue it is republicans standing in the way of getting this done. they're building up the minority leader, mr. boehner, in this race. when they have someone who is the head of the party of no, who is now saying yes, it's potentially problematic. >> so, interesting thing happening this tuesday in the world of politics, the last big primary day before the midterms in november. eight races, seven states, plus d.c. which one are you watching the most closely? >> delaware is getting so much attention. a sleepy race in the smallest of states, getting so much attention at the end, because the tea party there could cost republicans the chance to pick up a seat in one of the most democratic states in the country. here, christie o'donnell got some late support from sarah palin and others. she's running a strong challenge
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against mike castle, the establishment choice. this could be a case where the tea party takes a big chunk away from the republican chances this fall. >> rick klein, thank you. and some new economic numbers that could prove troubling for democrats trying to hold opt power in congress. 170,000 families were homeless, or in homeless shelters in 2009. that's a 30% increase in two years. the census bureau is expected to announce this week that as many as 15% of american families lived in poverty last year, up from 13.2%. in iran tonight, it now appears that an american woman arrested more than a year ago along the border with iraq is on the verge of coming home. but the news for her two traveling companions are not so good. here's jim sciutto. >> reporter: the welcome news came on arne ran state television. tehran's chief prosecutor saying, sarah shourd would be released duce to her health, provided she pay half a million dollars in bail. but he added there's now enough evidence to try shourd and the two other american hikers, josh
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fattal and shane bauer for illegally entering the country. today, their lawyer was allowed to meet them for the first time since their arrest 14 months ago, saying, despite everything, they were all in high spirits. "i'm hoping to get all of them released on bail," he said. for now, though, shourd will be leaving behind her fiance, shane bauer and good friend shgtz josh fattal. the president, mahmoud ahmadinejad, lobbied for her freedom, only to be scuttled. >> we're hopeful and encouraged by this news, but there have been starts and stops in this before, and until that actually happens, you know, we're on a wait and see basis. >> reporter: she's being released on bail. will she be pressured to return for the trial? >> i'm sure it will weigh heavily on her, if they do ask for her to come back. nobody wants to think that two people's lives depend on them returning to a country.
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>> reporter: one thing u.s. officials insist is that any bail money is not coming from the u.s. government. still, shourd's lawyer says the release is likely to happen tomorrow. dan? >> thanks, jim. in chile, the 33 miners trapped for more than five weeks are now getting some amenities most of us take for granted. electricity, water, fiber on tick communications and fresh air. the ventilation has improved so much that the miners are allowed to smoke cigarettes. they will be sent two packs a day to share. all summer, as you remember, we watched as millions of gallons of oil gush into the gulf of mexico. but then, a mystery. where did all that oil go? now, some tine cysts say they have an answer. here's matt gut mapp. >> reporter: for 86 days, this well gushed into the gulf, over 180 million gallons of oil. 17 exxon valdezes. so, where did it go? a noaa study last month said 75% of the oil was scooped up,
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burned off or evaporated. now researchers say they have a simpler answer. it sank. >> no, it's not gone. it in places where nobody looking for it. it's stuck on the bottom. a lot of it is on the bottom. >> reporter: dr. joy and her team have been taking core samples of the sea floor. she says they found a field of oil two inches thick spreading as far as 70 miles from the well head. >> we're finding it everywhere that we've looked. >> reporter: i wonder if you could pinpoint one thing for us that is most worrisome about your findings so far. >> there's nothing living in this area other than bacteria. i have yet to see a living shrimp, a living worm, nothing. >> reporter: joye, who cautions the findings are preliminary, saying if those organisms are effected, eventually larger fish and humans may also be. in a statement, the government says, it's working with academic scientists to monitor aggressively where the oil is sub surface.
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but that hasn't always been the case. in may, joye was part of a team featured here that discovered giant underwater plumes of oil. at first, the administration demanded they stop talking about the plumes. the government, ultimately, and then bp, acknowledged the plumes existence. do you expected to be hounded because of this, as well? >> yes, i do. >> reporter: this time, also, joye says she has more research to do, but is convinced the evidence speaks for itself. matt gutman, abc news. the fourth hurricane of the season looks like it could turn into a monster. igor formed in the atlanta overnight and has already reached category 4 strength with 1 140-mile-an-hour winds. the storm poses no immediate threat to land, but forecasters say people all over the east coast should be keeping an eye on this one. and coming up here on "world news" this sunday, our martha raddatz goes to one of the most dangerous combat outposts in afghanistan, where the commander
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carries a card bearing the name of every soldier he's lost. from the ruins of the world trade center, the survivor tree, rescued and now set to return. and, check out what's happened to the rock and roll experiences. massages, manicures and gourmet food -- for the right price. ♪
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there were protests in afghanistan against that plan by the preacher from florida to burn the koran, though the preacher has backed down. there are two reports, rather, there are reports that two protesters were shot and killed today. the last of the 30,000 additional u.s. forces sent into afghanistan by president obama were deployed last week. they're going to serve in eastern afghanistan, a remote region where the insurgency is very strong. this is a crucial test of mr. obama's surge strategy. our martha raddatz went to the front lines with the commanding general of american forces in that part of the country. >> reporter: for two days, we traveled with major general john campbell across vast stretches of countryside to some of the most remote and dangerous combat outposts in afghanistan. >> on top of the hill top is pakistan. they're hit with ten rounds of indirect fire yesterday. >> reporter: which is why, when we hit the landing zone, we are told to run. general campbell commands more
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than 30,000 soldiers, who see regular and sustained combat. some, just rushing back to reload when we arrive. it has been a bloody summer. when we visited general campbell in july, he had lost 27 soldiers. >> we doubled what we had before. about 76 right now. >> reporter: so many soldiers that campbell can no longer carry the cards bearing each of their names in just one pocket. can you just read one of them in. >> this is commander wallace. he was killed just last weekend. he had been in country for about four days. he's got four kids. four small kids, so -- >> reporter: campbell and his soldiers do not oceaexpect the violence to ease up with the arrival of the last surge forces. >> where we go brings out the
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enemy, i think. >> reporter: for the soldiers doing the fighting, they see the surge as an opportunity. >> we're going to be able to get into the dufrifferent towns and cities and get to know the leaders. we're going to be able to push out more and hopefully get the people on our side. >> reporter: the soldiers say they have already seen some progress, but there is a sense that with the clock ticking in washington, the surge is the last real chance for success. >> the time is right. we have an opportunity to make a huge differences. >> reporter: and as general campbell knows all too well, whatever difrference they make will mean more sacrifice. martha rad dad, abc news, kunar province, afghanistan. and when we come back, the survivor tree. it once stood at the world trade center, now scarred, but on the way back. are you one of them? remember when you had more energy for 18 holes with your buddies? [ glass shatters ] more passion for the one you love? more fun with your family and friends? it could be a treatable condition
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side effects may include headache, nosebleed, and sore throat. [ inhales deeply ] i told my allergy symptoms to take a hike. omnaris. ask your doctor. battling nasal allergy symptoms? omnaris combats the cause. get omnaris for $11 at omnaris.com. one one thing that has largely been lost in the fight over the plan to build an islamic community center near ground zero is that there's finally been genuine progress in restoring the actual site. and in time for next year's tenth anniversary, some city workers are planning to bring back to ground zero an extraordinary survivor. t.j. winnick has that story. >> reporter: at first glance, this pear tree looks like all the rest in this nursery. but look a little closer, and its scars hint at an incredible journey. one that began nine years ago. in the days after september 11th, rescue workers were in a race against time to find survivors. this tree, bent and broken, was
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pulled out from under 12 feet of rubble. but it spring a small branch, willing itself to survive. richie has been nursing the tree back to health from the beginning. >> when we saw the tree come up, it looked like a wounded soldier. >> reporter: it became known as the survivor tree. serving as an inspiration for those who escaped ground zero. >> people want to be part of it. they want to hug this tree, because they're survivors. >> reporter: soon, it will return home when it is replanted this november at what will be the national september 11th memorial and me suuseum. the first trees were planted here two weeks ago. in the end, 416 in all. all of them, white oaks like these right here, except for one. the survivor tree. >> be able to tell time. oh, yeah, that's, that burned bark, that's from 9/11. and everything else is a rebirth and regrowth. >> reporter: the tree stands 35 feet high and is thriving,
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having made it through new york's, and america's, darkest day. t.j. winnick, abc news, new york. >> great story. and coming up, is it still a genuine rock and roll experience when you can get a foot massage?
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as rock fans, both baby boomers and gen-xors like myself guess older, we are getting uncomfortable at rock concerts. so, now the concert industry is responding with some astoundingly lavish offerings. at woodstock, people put up with mud, rain and general misery. flash forward 41 years to the three-day music festival in chicago, where, for 45,000 bucks, you can rent a private cabana with air conditioning, gourmet food, your own bartender and a privileged view of lady gaga. did you imagine being in the crowd ever again? >> i mean, i guess i could imagine. i don't know if i would want to go back in. >> reporter: if $45,000 is a little steep, how about 850 bucks for access to a private
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shaded area with more fancy food, spa treatments -- >> massages today, massages and facials and mani/pedis tomorrow. >> reporter: luxury port-a-po y port-a-potties. this embodies rock and roll to me. and chauffeured golf carts. you are thinking there are people out there that are willing to pay extra for a foot massage when i want it. >> yes, that would be correct. >> reporter: it seems to be the new big thing in the concert industry. for around $950, vips can meet the band kiss and get a boat load of branded gifts. for around $1,800, bon jovi fans get special backstage tours -- >> this one is probably the most recognizable guitar of john's. >> reporter: a prime rib dinner, and even a chance to take their seats home with them. and at ozzfest, hard rocking brides and grooms can get the
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unholy matrimony package for just $2,666. get it? the sour economy has brought the convert industry down by 15% this year, but even during a recession, some people are still willing to pay for star treatment. >> and in these times, it was a sacrifice. but well worth it. and that is going to do it for "world news" this sunday. i'm dan harris. thank you for watching. diane sawyer is right back here tomorrow night. good night.
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after four years, adrian fenty is now apologizing. he never apologized for giving control of $82 million in city contracts to his frat brothers. no apology for his secret trips and missed appearances, for record-high unemployment and overspending the budget.

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